Welcome to a new chapter of ‘The Holidays By Soberon‘, a series of blogposts, each bearing a gift idea that I recommend would make a more than fine gift during the quickly approaching Holidays.

With a mere 2 weeks till Christmas and 3 weeks till NYE, you might need to speed things up, and that’s what I’ll be doing as well! Expect more gift ideas every couple of days, let’s take things up a notch.


Today’s recommendation takes us to the Orkney Islands, a little island-group between the most Northern part of the Scottish mainland and the Shetland islands. It’s here that the Kirkwall Distillery of ‘Highland Park Whisky‘ is located.

Fun Fact: Kirkwall Distillery is the northmost Distillery of Scotland, almost located in the Arctic Circle.

Founded in 1798, Highland Park has quite a rich past, much like the Orkney Islands themselves, soaked in Viking History, and that’s something they proudly celebrate, both inside the bottle and on the stunning outside. (It might have to do with my previous life as a metalhead, but while some might think the Viking theme and heavily embossed bottle are a bit over the top, I find it brutally awesome!)

The reason I chose Highland Park in this series of Holiday Rec’s is not just because of its heritage and looks (although both are pretty convincing, aren’t they? 😀), it’s also because this Whisky holds a unique flavor profile: the result of their locally hand-harvested peat and the use of Oloroso Sherry Casks for aging.

A great entry in the world of Highland Park, and today’s focus bottling, is their 12yo expression, an amber-coloured with flavors of rich winter spices, sweet and bitter oranges and a gentle grumble of smokey peat.

The 12yo expression carries the name VIKING HONOUR refering to an old Viking saying:

I am a reflection of my ancestors and values. I keep them close and continue to learn, to pass on those values to future generations. My name is all I truly have. Let it be a legacy of honour.

What  makes the 12yo a great gift, next to being a solid whisky, is that several shops currently sell a boxed set with a mini (50ml) sample of the 18yo VIKING PRIDE.


If you are familiar with the standard ‘age statement expressions’ in the line-up of Highland Park, you can go crazy and have a look at their more unique and exclusive bottlings. During Spirits In The Sky, I had a taste of their ‘Full Volume‘, ‘The Light‘ and ‘The Dark‘ bottlings, each being phenomenal experiences.

To get you going in the mixing department, I also made a cocktail with the Viking Honour: Meet The Northerner, a herbaceous Whisky twist on the classic ‘Southside Cocktail‘.


– 60ml Highland Park 12
– 25ml Fresh Lime Juice
– 20ml Simple Syrup
– 5ml Green Chartreuse
– A barspoon of Absinthe
– Mint leaves

a) Muddle mint with simple syrup and lime juice.
b) Add all the other ingredients and shake vigorously with ice . 
c) Double strain in a tumbler over 1 large rock of ice
(or multiple ice cubes if you don’t have that).
d) Garnish with a healthy sprig of mint.

Highland Park Whisky can be found at most supermarkets and specialised shops at a recommended price (for the 12yo/VIKING HONOUR) of €45-50. The Giftset with the mini 18yo can be found at Drankenwereld. Time to release that inner viking!

Stay tuned for more Holiday Recommendations!


Disclaimer 1: All pictures and text are property of Matthias Soberon / Served By Soberon. Nothing can be used or copied without written permission of the author and the addition of credits.

Disclaimer 2: These ‘Holiday-Recommendations’ are entirely personal and all chosen by me. While some items might have been gifted, these are in no way paid promotions or recommendations that were chosen for me in stead of by me.

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